MISSION AND ACCOMPLISHMENTS
Since its founding in 1985, the non-profit Dante Alighieri Society of Denver has shared the essence of Italian life and culture with our community, thereby enriching Colorado with even more zest and vitality. Our principal activity is raising funds to provide scholarships for the study of Italian language, culture and music to American college and university students in the Denver metropolitan area and in northeastern Colorado. The Society underwrites cultural and entertainment programs for the Denver area, striving to appeal to a broad range of interests. The Society also offers high quality instruction of the Italian language for adults.
Since 1985, the Society has awarded more than $280,000 of academic and music scholarships to numerous college students. We also have provided financial support for the teaching of Italian at metro area high schools and we initiated the teaching of Italian at Metropolitan State University of Denver.
Cultural and entertainment programs
The Society offers frequent programs throughout the year to share the riches of Italian culture. We have hosted a large number of musicians, dancers, and performers from different regions of Italy, as well as local artists and scholars who have enlightened and entertained the club and the community. These programs have included:
● Choir appearances: Coro 7 Laghi from Varese, Chorus Ursicinensisfrom Genova, Coro Monte Pizzo from Lizzano in Belvedere, and Coro ANA Roma from Rome.
● Folk dancers: Gruppo Folkloristico Caprivese from Capriva del Friuli, Gruppo Folkloristico Val d'Akragas from Agrigento, and Vivitalia Festival from various regions of Italy.`
● Operatic recitals: Soprano Beverly Christiansen Fernarld of Denver, Soprano Angela Papale and pianist Fabio Marra from Palermo, Tenor Alessandro Nocera and piano duet Maria Zappala' and Rosario Pavone from Catania, Mezzo Soprano Jennifer DeDominici from Denver.
● Instrumental performances: Roberto Ferraresi (guitar) from Ferrara, Quintetto a fiati italiano from Alto Ticino, Pagni-Mariotti duo (piano and flute) from Pesaro, Orchestra a Plettro Gino Neri (a 55-piece mandolin ensenble) from Ferrara, Luigi Calabria (piano) from Rome, and a recital to benefit the restoration of "La Fenice" opera house in Venice with Rosanna Patrona-Aurand (piano), Ignace Jang (violin), and Evan Orman (cello).
The Society has presented symposiums about life in Italy today, and contemporary and classic Italian films are also screened throughout the year. Club members have enjoyed excursions to local museums for special exhibitions with an Italian theme, competing in a friendly game of bocce, and celebrating the festival of Carnevale (the Italian version of Mardi Gras). The Society also offers cooking classes about the delicious cucina Italiana, taught by professional chefs and accomplished cooks.
Italian language instruction
The Society offers high quality instruction in the Italian language for adults. Classes include beginner, intermediate, advanced and conversational levels, and are taught by experienced, professional, bi-lingual teachers. Classes are offered in ten-week sessions during the winter, spring, summer and fall.